Obama briefed by FEMA on Louisiana flooding

Obama briefed by FEMA on Louisiana flooding
© Getty Images
President Obama on Wednesday received a briefing from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate on the deadly floods that have washed over Louisiana.
 
In a phone conversation during Obama’s vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., the president directed Fugate to “utilize all resources available to assist in the response and recovery,” according to White House spokeswoman Jennifer Friedman.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
He also asked for ongoing briefings on FEMA’s response efforts.
 
The White House announced Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson will visit the area on Thursday to review the situation on the ground.  
 
The announcement comes three days after Obama declared a state of emergency in Louisiana after flooding there left 11 dead and displaced thousands of residents.
 
Days of heavy rainfall led to historic flooding in low-lying areas in the southern part of the state. 
 
Obama’s disaster declaration means that federal dollars can be spent to boost state and local response efforts. FEMA officials have been on the ground to help get Louisiana residents into temporary housing, the White House said. 
  
Around 40,000 homes have experienced damage as a result of the flooding, and more than 70,000 people have registered for FEMA assistance, according to the White House. 
 
The president previously received updates on the situation from his homeland security adviser, Lisa Monaco, and Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D). 
 
But Obama, who is in the middle of his annual two-week family vacation on the secluded Massachusetts island, has yet to speak publicly about the floods.